The days are getting shorter, and there’s a nip in the air (now and then) – sure signs that fall is on its way. Now is the perfect time to put these important fall chores on your to-do list and get your home in shape before the cold weather rolls in.
It's a lot more pleasant to do these tasks now than two months from now when it's cold outside. You'll be glad you got a jump on it!
Seal Up Potential Leaks
Caulk and seal around exterior door and window frames. Look for gaps where pipes or wiring enter the home and caulk those as well. Not only does heat escape from these openings, but water can enter and may eventually cause mold problems and even structural damage.
Check the roof for missing or damaged shingles
Winter weather can cause serious damage to a vulnerable roof, leading to a greater chance of further damage inside the home. Although you should always have a qualified professional inspect and repair the roof, you can do a preliminary survey safely from the ground using binoculars.
Check the integrity of your gutters and eaves
Consider installing leaf guards if your gutters can accommodate them – they are real time savers and can prevent damage from clogged gutters. Check the seams between sections of gutter, as well as between the gutter and downspouts, and make any necessary adjustments or repairs.
Have the furnace inspected to ensure it’s safe and in good working order
Have the furnace inspected now. You made need to turn it on in a couple of weeks. Replace disposable furnace air filters or clean the permanent type according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Using a clean filter will help the furnace run more efficiently, saving you money and energy.
Have the firebox and chimney inspected and cleaned
If you enjoy the crackle of a wood-burning fireplace on a chilly fall evening, have the firebox and chimney professionally cleaned before lighting a fire this season. Creosote, a byproduct of wood burning, can build up to dangerous levels and cause a serious chimney fire if not removed.
Once the leaves have fallen and the cold weather has set in, it's best to get these things done before it gets really cold.
Clear gutters and eaves troughs of leaves, sticks, and other debris
Drain garden hoses and store them indoors to protect them from the elements
Shut off outdoor faucets and make sure exterior pipes are drained of water. Faucets and pipes can freeze and burst, causing leaks and potentially serious water damage.